Trafford puzzle

Last year was Lake Trafford’s drought of record.

It plunged below 17.5 ft for a record-setting 12 consecutive months (from May 2007 to May 2008).

The next closest dry spell was all the way back in 1962. But it wasn’t as severe (see graph).

That raises a bit of a hydrologic puzzler.

Isn’t it this winter that’s been the record-setting dry season? And if so, why is Trafford still hovering above 18 ft all the way into late April of such an epic drought?

My guess is this:

Because Trafford is a lake, not a wetland, and that it has no major outlets draining it away has allowed it to store water deeper and longer from Fay than the wetlands that surround it, (and which have been dry for months).

That leads me to a follow-up puzzler:

To what degree did Lake Trafford feed water into those wetlands – Camp Keais Strand, Corkscrew Swamp, and Okaloacoochee Slough – during both the dry and wet seasons, back in the days before they built the canals?

That makes Lake Trafford an unsolved puzzle piece of the swamps.

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